Posts Tagged ‘Heritage Foundation’

UPDATE: Senator Arlen Specter has made a decision to not support the bill… which will likely doom it to failure.  Specter fails in many respects as a true conservative, but kudos to him on this decision.


The Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA, H.R. 800), coming before congress this session is the most absurd bill I have heard of in a while.  My dislike of unions is not hidden (posts here, here, and video here) and this brings up a perfect reason.  The law is designed to make it possible for a union to be formed by workers openly signing forms – “card check” – versus using a secret ballot.  At what point in American history have we ever assumed that forcing people to make their vote known publicly is “freer” than secret ballot?  If that is the case, what’s the deal with the secrecy in our local and national elections.  Clearly, the desire is to be make people nervous about their vote so the unions can bully them into voting for the union.

Don’t agree?  How about what has been said openly by the unions to potential swing-vote Senator Arlen Specter?  From the Washington Times:

…labor leaders promised Sen. Arlen Specter that they will switch union members from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party to help him win a tough 2010 primary election, The Washington Times has learned.

Pennsylvania AFL-CIO President William M. George said he pledged Mr. Specter “all kinds of help from the union” in a series of meetings to woo the Republican senator’s support for the bill, which would ease rules favoring secret-ballot elections to unionize workplaces.

“We are pushing to give him help in the primary, including changing Democrats to Republicans for the primary,” Mr. George told The Times. “It’s hard to do because of other races in the state … but we’ll do it for ‘card check.’ “

How exactly do you go about making your members change their registration status again?  Not only do they try to bully people into voting a union shop into existence, but then they promise openly to bully people into voting for candidates they want.

The AFL-CIO’s argument for this law, here.  Heritage Foundation’s argument against, here.


MARK ADDS: With the Obama administration, there seems to be no getting around news about unions lately.  See this article about how the Davis-Beacon provision is being incorporated into stimulus money for projects… so many projects are forced to pay prevailing union wage.  An example in the article talks of workers caulking the windows of low-income housing in L.A. to weatherize them.  County Officials typically pay $15/hr for that work, but stimulus rules will require them to pay $30/hr… so half as many houses will be serviced.  Great news… unions win at the expense of others, as usual.

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Since 2003 the FCC has enforced measures for Wireless Local Number Portability… meaning that we have the option to keep our wireless numbers if we decide to change carriers.  Previously, many people would stay with a carrier despite poor service or a bad plan because they didn’t want to change their cell phone number and the hassle that came with it.  This competitive measure helped ensure choice for consumers and forced providers to deliver better service or their customers would leave.  This is very similar to a proposal by many in dealing with health care subsidies and rules given to employers.

Currently, employers are not taxed on the wages they provide in the form of health care, therefore many offer that in lieu of real wages of the same amount paid to their employees.  However as more people have come to enroll in their company plans it is becoming more and more like the cell phone portability issue.  Workers do not have the portability available with their plans, and may stay at their current job out of convenience.  In addition, workers who do not receive health care from their employer do not enjoy the same tax breaks as the companies, and are therefore subsidizing those who do.  On top of this, and as part of the tax deal with companies, employers are forced to include certain benefits in their packages that many individuals would not choose independently, which drives up the cost for the insurance – basically, instead of potentially receiving a higher wage, an employee may instead enjoy the insurance coverage for breast reduction surgery.

  • The Acton Institute has a brief article regarding this topic.
  • An even more in-depth and compelling case is made here, courtesy of The Heritage Foundation.
  • Also today, Thomas Sowell discusses a new book by Sally C. Pipes, The Top Ten Myth’s of American Health Care (free .pdf of the book available online here), specifically the political trend toward universal coverage.

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